Keven Henkes is a favorite children's storybook author and illustrator. He writes about issues that resonate with young children. His storybook, Chester's Way was published in 1988.
This story tells about Chester who likes doing things a certain way - every single day. His best friend is exactly like him. "Chester wouldn't play baseball unless Wilson played, and they never swung at the first pitch or slid headfirst."
But then Lilly moves into the neighborhood and she has her own way of doing things. When she tries to play with Chester and Wilson, they tell her they are busy. They avoid her because she is just too different.
One day some bullies come and yell "personal remarks" at Chester and Wilson, and out jumps Lilly dressed as a "fierce-looking cat with horrible fangs and a water pistol" to defend them.
Chester and Wilson realize that being different isn't such a bad thing. They get to know Lily and they like how different she is. She encourages them to step outside their comfort zone. "Chester and Wilson taught Lilly hand signals. And she taught them how to pop wheelies."
Kevin Henkes' books teach kids how to deal with their problems using humor, fun illustrations, and common sense. He is never heavy handed or didactic. His characters (while illustrated as animals) are kids being kids. He portrays females and males in a positive way.
Read to a child today even if that child is you.